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Question of the Malvinas Islands: Argentina reaffirms once again its sovereignty

Friday, 03 January 2020
Information for the Press N°: 

187 years after the illegal occupation by the United Kingdom

On 3 January 1833, the Malvinas Islands, an integral part of the Argentine national territory, were illegally occupied by British forces which expelled the Argentine population and authorities legitimately established in the islands. The Argentine Republic immediately protested this illegitimate act of force and never consented to it. Over the 187 years of this usurpation, Argentina has at all times vigorously asserted its claim to exercise its effective sovereignty over the archipelagos and maritime areas in the South Atlantic to this date occupied by the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Furthermore, the Argentine Republic has constantly condemned the unilateral activities of exploration and exploitation of renewable and non-renewable natural resources in illegally occupied Argentine maritime areas which, coupled with the continued British military presence in the South Atlantic, violate United Nations Resolutions and have given rise to concern and rejection on the part of the international community.

The Argentine Republic once again reaffirms its imprescriptible sovereignty rights over the Malvinas, South Georgias and South Sandwich Islands, as well as over the surrounding maritime areas, all of which are an integral part of the Argentine territory.

Recovering the full exercise of Argentine sovereignty over the Malvinas, South Georgias and South Sandwich Islands and the surrounding maritime areas, while respecting the way of life of the islanders and in accordance with international law, is a permanent and inalienable objective of the Argentine people, as enshrined in the Argentine Constitution.

The United Nations has recognized the existence of a sovereignty dispute between the Governments of the Argentine Republic and the United Kingdom and has issued the mandate to resume bilateral negotiations with a view to finding a peaceful solution, taking into account the interests of the population of the islands.

The call of the International Community for both countries to resume bilateral negotiations to settle the sovereignty dispute is enshrined in Resolution 2065 (XX)  of the General Assembly and has been repeated in subsequent resolutions, as well as in the resolutions that the Member States of the United Nations Special Committee on Decolonization adopt every year by consensus.

This has also been reiterated in numerous declarations by multilateral and regional fora which, like the Organization of American States, the Group of 77 and China, the Ibero-American Summit, ECLAC, UNASUR, MERCOSUR, PARLASUR, the Africa-South America Summit (ASA) and the Summit of South American-Arab Countries (ASPA), have urged that negotiations be resumed as soon as possible.

In his recent inaugural address before Congress, President Alberto Fernández reaffirmed that the sovereignty claim over the Malvinas Islands is a State Policy which transcends political party lines and stressed that "... there is no more room for colonialism in the 21st Century". In his address, the President also stated that Argentine democracy knows no other path than diplomacy and peace to assert its claim.

A few months away from commemorating the first time that the Argentine flag was flown in the Malvinas Islands, on 6 November 1820, Argentina reiterates its willingness to resume negotiations with the United Kingdom in the same constructive spirit that inspired both countries for nearly two decades, after 1966, and led them to discuss different solutions.

Marking another year of illegal occupation, the Argentine Government and people once again reaffirm their legitimate and imprescriptible rights over the Malvinas, South Georgias and South Sandwich Islands and the surrounding maritime areas, while reiterating their permanent and sincere willingness to resume bilateral negotiations with the United Kingdom, as called for by the international community, with a view to finding a peaceful and definitive solution to the sovereignty dispute.